Lakers 5 takeaways: Win-win by landing Andre Drummond, beating Magic

Lakers guard Kentavious Caldwell-Pope tries to cut off a drive by Magic guard Dwayne Bacon.
Lakers guard Kentavious Caldwell-Pope tries to cut off a drive by Magic guard Dwayne Bacon on Sunday night at Staples Center.
(Marcio Jose Sanchez / Associated Press)

Here are five takeaways from a game Sunday that Andre Drummond would’ve loved — 103 total rebounds in a brick-filled 96-93 win against the Orlando Magic:

1) He’s a thriller

Before the Lakers’ game, coach Frank Vogel didn’t want to comment about Drummond because the deal wasn’t official — even though Drummond announced the new relationship on social media hours before, which as the kids know, is a big deal.


After the team announced the signing Sunday, Vogel was all smiles when asked about the Lakers’ newest addition.

“We’re thrilled. We’re all thrilled to add Andre Drummond, a player of his caliber to our team,” Vogel said during the postgame videoconference. “He’s one of the best centers in the league, someone that every defensive coordinator is going to have to account for and to figure out how to handle him when they’re trying to slow down AD and ‘Bron and our guards. I think he’s going to give us a big lift in the immediate future and then obviously when we get going.

“He can dominate the game on both sides of the ball. His physicality is something you have to account for.”

2) What’s next?

The Lakers are off Monday, but a rare practice on Tuesday will give the team a chance to try to get Drummond as oriented as possible. Vogel didn’t say when Drummond would debut, but there’s little doubt they need him ASAP — especially on offense where they struggled again Sunday.


“He’s one of the most dominant rollers, lob catchers, post players, offensive rebounders in the game …” Vogel said. “The list is long for how he’s gonna contribute to our group and you know I do think he’s gonna have an impact on our group right away offensively.”

3) Who’s out?

Marc Gasol started at center Sunday, but he’d be the logical player to see his time slashed, with Vogel and others talking about Drummond in the same breath as Lakers stars Anthony Davis and LeBron James.

Vogel didn’t get into specifics, but he did say that he thought the Lakers would need to play all of their centers.

“All I can say is we’re gonna need them all,” he said. “There’s no doubt in my mind we need all three of them for this playoff push that we’re about to endure.”

4) Depth matters


The Lakers looked like they had maybe lost one of those three — Montrezl Harrell, the anchor of the second unit — in the second half when the bench star hobbled up the court, forcing the Lakers to call timeout.

Highlights from the Lakers’ 96-93 victory over the Orlando Magic on March 28, 2021, at Staples Center.

“It was one of those plays kind of like a funny bone on your elbow,” Harrell said. “Guy drove baseline real hard, and I wear a pad on that knee, but he kneed me literally right behind the pad. So it was the kind of thing where I kind of felt like a tingling sensation going through my leg and it kind of just went numb for a little minute. But it’s, like I said, it’s like one of those funny bone-type things. I’m fine — but definitely something that scares you when it happens at that first point of contact.”

5) Play of the game

Dennis Schroder took 10 free throws, his increased aggressiveness a major part of why the Lakers have won two games in a row and which helped slow their slide in the Western Conference.

Things were pretty dicey in the fourth quarter when Schroder made his biggest play with the Lakers trailing by four points and Schroder at the line.


He made his first but missed his second. Instead of quitting on the play, Schroder snuck around the back and poked the rebound loose, the steal leading to an easy layup that ignited what would become a 12-1 run that flipped the game.